Clearly, 2020 has been an odd year. COVID-19, shootings, riots elections, Fortnite getting removed from the Apple App Store... needless to say, many of us were a bit "off" this year.
I've always been a "goal setter" but over the last few years, I've added an activity to my end-of-year routine: reflection. It consists of two parts: tracking my progress toward the previous year's goals and noting significant events or milestones over the course of that year.
Tracking progress toward my goals is pretty self-explanatory. I give myself a pass/fail grade based on the criteria I defined at the beginning of the year. You can see my 2020 grade further down. I know pass/fail can be a harsh way of looking at your goals, especially if you make great progress toward it but don't end up hitting it at the end. But if I give myself a Failed grade, I hold it loosely, celebrate the progress that I made, and let it go. I don't put a lot of weight on the actual completion of the goal as long as I made a solid effort towards it.
For the second part of the reflection, I typically break it down into three main categories:
Of course, these categories are simply the buckets I like to reflect on, but you can choose as many or as few as you like.
I begin by making a list of those three categories. As of this year, I set up my system in Roam Research which allows me to tag books, trips and significant events throughout the year and surface them easily during my year-end reflection.
The next step is to go through each item I've added and flesh out the details. This gives me the chance to remember and appreciate the events of the year as well as document additional details that I don't want to forget.
While I won't be sharing those results of my reflection session since many of them are personal, I will share my progress toward my 2020 goals with you.
I ended up with about a 43% completion rate which is worse than most years but, then again... this wasn't most years. I'll give myself a little grace.
Going into 2021, I'm making a few changes to my system. I'm reformatting my goals — I'll do another post about this soon — and I'm adding a "Lessons Learned" section to my reflections list. I love the idea of keeping track of my lessons learned. I used to do it religiously back when I was blogging 3x a week. Thanks to Roam Research, I've built a pretty consistent journaling habit and have since done a better job of capturing those lessons learned.
Anyway... here's to a better year in 2021 🍻